Drinking Liberally Sioux Falls Chapter Blog

Tonight, As Always, the "TapHouse 41"

We meet tonight, as always, at the "TapHouse 41" located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: No one won our Trivia Contest's $40 grand prize last week. With the $10 we add each week and the $20 Mary generously contributed last week, our Grand Prize stands at $50 today. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute your winnings to a cause or a campaign of your choice.

In Politics: With the support of Trump and our US Senators, Thune and Rounds, Republicans plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act next week and throw 23 million people off of their Health Insurance. Some Republicans are going through their usual hand-wringing ritual, complaining that the bill they plan to vote on goes too far or doesn't go far enough. But we all know their hand-wringing is just for show. Deep down Republicans want to give tax cuts to the wealthy patrons they serve and if they have to eliminate the health insurance for 23 million Americans to do so, so be it. Amen. Tough crap. To paraphrase the views of Trump, our Congressional Delegation, and most Republicans, "The people who will lose their health insurance under our plan are poor anyway, Right?… So do they really count? They are Godless too most likely, Right?...If they were good like us, if they were Godlike, they wouldn't be poor, Right? And they could buy health insurance themselves. Right? Besides they will still have "access" to health insurance (if they can afford it)(snark, snark)), so what are they complaining about. Screw them! I want my tax cuts."

As usual, President Obama said it best, "Simply put, if there's a chance you might get sick, get old, or start a family – this bill will do you harm. And small tweaks over the course of the next couple weeks, under the guise of making these bills easier to stomach, cannot change the fundamental meanness at the core of this legislation."

"The Senate bill, unveiled today, is not a health care bill. It's a massive transfer of wealth from middle-class and poor families to the richest people in America."
— Barack Obama, in a Facebook post.
https://www.facebook.com/barackobama/posts/10154996557026749

And, if the Republican's attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act wasn't enough, we have the Russian thing going on and all the other crazy stuff this alt-right, Republican President can dream up in his fact-free universe. For example, via Political Wire ( https://politicalwire.com/ ) we have,

"Trump Proposes Law That's Existed for 20 Years: By Taegan Goddard 141
President Trump "called for a new law barring immigrants from receiving welfare for at least five years at a rally on Wednesday. But neither Trump nor nearly 6,000 of his die-hard supporters seemed to realize that the law has already existed for more than 20 years," USA Today reports.
"Trump received a standing ovation and pledged his administration would put the legislation into effect 'very shortly.'"

If you want the facts on this and other matters, I discovered a very thorough and academic source:

http://econofact.org/do-undocumented-immigrants-overuse-government-benef...

Finally, here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/983.htm

I have started drinking seriously. Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.

And, don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "TapHouse 41", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

Spellerberg Park Friday, Potluck Picnic, 5:00 PM

This Friday, and this Friday only, we move our regular 5:00 PM gathering from the "TapHouse 41" to Spellerberg Park at 22nd and Western and join the Democratic potluck picnic honoring Roger Andal. Roger was a Minnehaha County Democratic Chair, a leader of the Disabled American Veterans, a Tom Daschle aide, and an all around good man. He passed away unexpectedly several years ago.

I am not sure alcohol is allowed in a public park so Friday we may not be able to live up to our name. Use your own judgment but, considering the Trumpian world we live in, do rules really matter? For the record, I think so, but I am not sure Republicans do. They appear able to accept any outlandish behavior from Donald Trump as long as he supports tax cuts for their Billionaire masters, appoints right-wing federal judges, and eliminates regulations protecting us from Wall Street scam artists and faceless corporate bureaucrats.

Join us for Friday's picnic at Spellerberg Park.

We need to discuss how we can influence the dwindling minority (down to 34% in recent polls) of mostly Republican voters who still support Trump despite his right-wing agenda and his probable insanity.

In Trivia News: Mary won our $65 dollar Grand Prize last week answering all nine questions correctly. Congratulations Mary! She contributed her winnings to the Billie Sutton for Governor Campaign. (Billie comes from Gregory County and Mary hails from Mission, SD, just down the road. She feels a local connection. She also believes Billie is a strong Gubernatorial candidate. I concur.) Whether or not we hold a Trivia contest this Friday depends on the dynamics of the Democratic Picnic. If we do, the prize will be $10. If not, we will start our Trivia contest next week, June 15th, with a $20.00 prize when we return to our usual venue at the "Tabhouse 41".

In Politics: I posted this video last week evidencing the incontrovertible fact that Trump is a bully. I can't let it go. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecTuW_KU7YE

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/981.htm It has a very good summary debunking many of the falsehoods Trump repeated when he withdrew from the Paris (Global Warming) Accord.

Join us at Drinking Liberally Friday, at Spellerberg Park. Remember the Picnic is a potluck.

Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: At Spellerberg Park this week but normally at the "TapHouse 41", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

Tonight, As Always, the "41 TapHouse"

We meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41". The "Taphouse 41" is located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: No one won our Grand Prize last week. This week's Prize stands at $65. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute some of your winnings to a cause or a campaign of your choice.

In Politics: Internationally and nationally.... Trump pulled America out of the Paris Climate Accord yesterday. We join Syria and Nicaragua as the only other countries outside the Accord. Last week, Trump acted like a 5-year-old child at the NATO summit in Brussels, criticizing Germany and its Prime Minister, getting into a macho handshaking contest with French President Macron, and bullying his way to the front of a scrum of NATO heads-of-state in order to do his best Benito Mussolini impression. (Here is the video. ) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecTuW_KU7YE

I can't get over how rude the boorish bastard is.

It seems that whatever decision or appointment Trump has to make, he always chooses the most extreme course, he alway picks the person with the most extreme views: Session for Attorney General, Pruit for EPA Director, DeVos for Secretary of Education, the voter supression expert Kris Kobach to head a committee investigating voter fraud, and on and on... He may have received only 46% of the vote but there is no moderation in his soul. He wants what he wants when he wants it and to hell with the rest of us. He has his billions. We are not his concern.

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/980.htm

Back in South Dakota: Billie Sutton announced that he will seek the Democratic Party's nomination for Governor in 2018. I traveled to his ranch west of Platte to observe his announcement. It was a good event. The weather was beautiful as was the Sutton ranch and its setting above the Missouri River. He gave a good speech. He will be a fine candidate. Here is a link to an introductory video of Billie. http://www.ksfy.com/content/news/Minority-leader-to-announce-political-p...

Rumor has it other Democrats may enter the race. They are assured of a tough contest.

Finally, Save-the-Date: June 9th, next Friday at 5:00 PM at Spellerberg Park, there will be a pot-luck picnic and Democratic gathering in honor of Roger Andal, a former Minnehaha County Chair, long time leader of the Disabled American Veterans, Tom Daschle aide, and all around good man. Roger passed away unexpectedly several years ago. We will move our Drinking Liberally meeting to this event next week. While I am not sure alcohol is officially allowed in a public park, this is a Donald Trump world right now and, with his example, who needs to follow any norms or rules? I will, of course. I'm just asking...

Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.

Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

"TapHouse 41", Tonight. NATO, Diplomacy, and the Budget.

We meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41". The "Taphouse 41" is located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: Pam won our $90 Grand Prize last week, getting 8 of 9 questions right and correctly answering a tie-breaker question against Elwynn. She generously donated $45.00 of her winnings back to our Prize pool and used the balance to pay a number of bar tabs. Thank You, Pam. This week's Prize will start at $55. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute some of your winnings to a cause or a campaign of your choice.

In Politics, Internationally: Our President is traveling on a diplomatic mission to our European allies in NATO, the international alliance which contained the Soviet Union's post World War II aggression and which, almost without exception, has kept Europeans from killing each other for the past 70 years. NATO is the foundation on which we have built much of our economic and foreign policy since World War II. Trump doesn't seem to appreciate the importance of this alliance. Here is a link to a video that, in a few seconds, sums up Trump's approach to NATO and the rest of the world (except Russia and a few other autocratic states, of course):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecTuW_KU7YE

We can all agree that his behavior is boorish and rude, but he is still the crucible through which the world forms its opinion of our country and its people which, unfortunately, includes you and me.

Nationally, Trump released his budget as he romped in the Middle East with the King of Saudi Arabia. We will get into the details of his budget another time but it was appropriate he was visiting an absolute monarch at the time. Marie Antoinette, the Queen of France who famously said "Let them eat cake" in response to the pleas of a hungry mob, would have loved Trump's Budget. It cuts most programs that help people in exchange for tax cuts for the wealthy. In particular, it hurts South Dakota and much of rural America, cutting Medicaid, education funding, crop insurance, mental health funding, child nutrition programs, and on and on...

In South Dakota: Blinded by partisanship, our congressional delegation and Republican leaders continue to support Trump. They could speak out and stand with ordinary South Dakotans but they don't. Enough said.

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/979.htm

I need a Drink. Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.

Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

We meet at the "TapHouse 41", as always.

We meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41". The "Taphouse 41" is located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: Elwynn and Bruce both won a claim to our Grand Prize last week, answering 8 of 9 questions right including such obscure facts as, "Fact or Crap? Desilu Studios made the original Star Trek TV series?.... True. After a tiebreaker failed to end the deadlock, the co-winners generously contributed their windfall back to our Prize pool. Thank You, Elwynn and Bruce. This week's Prize increases to $90.00. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute your winnings to a cause or a campaign of your choice.

In Politics: Nationally, following last week's firing of FBI Director James Comey, the insane story of Trump and Associates continues to unfold with head-spinning regularity. Every day brings a new, earthshaking revelation about President Trump, his campaign and his administration and their involvement in Russia's meddling in our elections, their potential financial ties to Russian oligarchs, and their attempts to hide and obfuscate the truth. Finally, late Wednesday afternoon, Assistant Attorney General Ron Rosenstein brought some sanity to this madness by appointing former FBI Director Robert Mueller as an Independent Counsel to investigate all of it. Democrats and Republicans unanimously approved of Mueller's appointment, if, for no other reason, then the mutual desire to take a deep breath and absorb what is happening and where it will lead.

Rumors abound that Vice-president Pence is warming up in the on-deck circle in case Trump is forced to resign. But cracks have appeared in Pence's facade of blissful ignorance regarding Trump and he may yet get pulled into Trump's maelstrom of corruption and obstruction of justice. For those who wonder about the public officials behind Pence in the order of succession to the Presidency, here is the short list:
Speaker of the House…..Paul Ryan
President Pro Tem of the Senate…..Orrin Hatch
Secretary of State…..Rex Tillerson
Secretary of Treasury…..Steven Mnuchin
Secretary of Defense…..James Mattis
Attorney General…..Jeff Sessions

This is a very scary list when you consider that 83-year-old Orrin Hatch is probably the most reasonable person on it.

Meanwhile, underneath all the headlines, the Republican legislative agenda to give tax breaks to the wealthy, cut programs that help people, and eliminate regulations that protect everyone from corporate abuse and financial schemes marches on.

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/977.htm

In South Dakota: Along with many of you, I just received a flowery letter from Kristi Noem selling the Republican attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act. In her letter, Kristi claims the Republican plan will protect those with pre-existing conditions and guarantee everyone "access" to health insurance. In fact, it will do neither. Instead, the 30% with a pre-existing condition could be forced into high-risk insurance pools with high premiums which most will be unable to afford. And, by 'access" Kristi means "access to a health insurance market." Everyone has "access" to the health insurance markets right now. Kristi's plan only states the obvious while eliminating subsidies and protections people have now. "Access" is meaningless if you can't afford the cost of the insurance in the first place. Under Kristi's plan 24 million people will lose their health insurance because they wouldn't be able to afford their quoted premiums but they will still have "access" to insurance just in case they win the lottery or inherit a large bequest from a rich relative.

Kristi's letter is a masterpiece of misdirection. She shamelessly tries to sell us an empty bag of empathy. Some might call her disingenuous. But that is too kind. In fact, Kristi's is a liar. But, then she is a Republican and of the same Party as Trump. We shouldn't expect anything more.

I need a Drink. Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.

Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

Tonight, the "41 TapHouse". Maybe we should start a strike.

We meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41". The "Taphouse 41" is located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: No one won our Trivia Contest last week. This week's Prize increases to $80.00. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute your winnings to a cause or a campaign of your choice.

In Politics: Nationally, insanity prevails. Trump fired FBI Director, James Comey, just as the FBI's investigation into the Trump Campaign's possible collusion with Russia during the Presidential election was picking up steam. Comey had requested more money for the FBI's probe in the week's before his firing and he was scheduled to testify before the Senate's Intelligence Committee this week. Trump's rationale for the firing went through several iterations before he all but admitted he wanted the put an end to what he called the FBI's "bogus" probe. Many people see Nixonian parallels and compare Comey's firing to Nixon's firing of Independent Prosecutor, Archibald Cox, during the Watergate investigation in 1973. I agree. Unfortunately, most Republican officials won't admit we have a problem here. They want their tax cuts. They want their right-wing judicial appointments. They want their corporate masters unfettered from the environmental and financial regulations that protect us from abuse. They are apparently willing to risk our Democracy and the underlying strength of our Country to get what they want and they have circled their wagons to protect their minority President. Sad. Disheartening. Potentially a slow-moving disaster for everyone.

There are cracks in the dam but, as of now, they appear as outliers. As Republican columnist, William Kristol, lamented, "On it went all week—one Trumpian argument after another falling apart. And yet Republican officeholders mostly stuck by their president. Some of them praised Trump. Others avoided comment...It's an understandable impulse….We understand these arguments. We've made some of them. But there are times, when the stakes are high, that self-respecting officeholders need to lead, even if it's politically risky, rather than circle the wagons."

Our own Congressional Representatives have towed the Republican line too. It is Party over Country here is South Dakota. No surprises here.

As Democrats, we feel frustrated and powerless. But, beyond voicing our complaints and preparing for the next election which seems painfully far away, we can all do something right now. We can vote with our pocketbook. More precisely we can choose not to buy things. Trump's support rests on his promise to speed up our economy, create better jobs, and improve the lives of White people. Household consumption makes up almost 70% of GDP. If we all spend less, GDP will stagnate, Trump's supporters will be disabused of his promises, his base will erode, his job approval ratings will decline even more and maybe, just maybe, Republicans will grow a spine. So, I say, let's go on a consumer strike, postpone buying that new car, live with that old appliance for a few more months, vacation locally, eat at home, maybe invite over some family and friends, encourage them to join your strike, pocket the money you save, invest it wisely and create the change you believe in.

But, let's Drink on it first, at Drinking Liberally tonight.

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/976.htm

Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

Taphouse 41. 5 PM. Ann! Paula! We Are Here for You

We meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41". The "Taphouse 41" is located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: In the face of stiff competition from visiting guests from the Prairie and the Hills, John won last week's Trivia Contest. He generously contributed his winnings back to this week's Prize pool which now stands at $70.00. (Thank You, John.) It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute your winnings to a cause or a campaign of your choice. Join us

In Politics, Nationally: Trump got a bill to repeal President Obama's Affordable Care Act (ACA) through the US House by a vote of 217 to 213. Republicans deceptively titled their bill the Affordable HealthCare Act (AHCA). It now goes to the US Senate where most thoughtful people hope that the House bill's cuts to Medicaid, its scuttling of the current protections for people with pre-existing conditions, its elimination of basic protections against the malfeasance of Insurance Companies, and its elimination of other protections for ordinary Americans will be modified or eliminated. (But don't bet on it. Remember, Republicans control the Senate too and one should never underestimate the willingness of Republicans to screw ordinary Americans in exchange for invitations to lunch at Country Clubs and their need for accolades from their Corporate Masters.)

Democrats characterized the House AHCA bill as a massive tax cut for the wealthy that shifts one Trillion dollars in healthcare costs from the top 2% of Americans to their fellow citizens. But Democrats are only partly right. I say "partly" because Democrats forget that the 24 million Americans who will lose their healthcare insurance under the Republican plan will not be eligible for health care and they will die disproportionately, reducing healthcare costs overall. Pauper burial costs will increase of course, but that cost pales in comparison to the Trillion dollars saved in taxes for wealthy Americans.

The Republican HealthCare Plan for most Americans seems to be "Get sick and Die", a harsh conclusion until you remember, it is a Republican Plan.

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/975.htm

In South Dakota: The South Dakota Democratic Party (SDDP) held its McGovern Day festivities last weekend. The Press wasn't allowed to cover the main dinner with Keith Ellison, Congressman from Minnesota and National Democratic Party Vice-chair, but Democrats who attended the dinner reported they enjoyed hearing what he and the other speakers had to say. Those of us who missed their words of wisdom learned from the Media that the Press was not allowed to cover the event.

Oh! And Ann Tornberg survived a challenge by Paula Hawks to unseat her as SDDP Chair. Proposed Amendments to the SDDP's Constitution which would have required an immediate election of Party officers was withdrawn after 3 hours of procedural debate. The SDDP Executive Board has since appointed a committee to review the Party's Constitution and report back at the next state Central Committee meeting, July 8th. In the meantime, supporters of the proposed Amendments have started a recall petition against Ann.
I still don't understand what the dust-up is all about but it continues.

Ann and Paula did not attend our gathering last week but our offer to mediate their differences over a barrel of beer and a shot or two of Tequila remains open. What could it hurt!

I need a drink. Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.
Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

Taphouse 41 Tonight. Ann! Paula! Come! Let Us Mediate.

We meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41". The "Taphouse 41" is located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: No one won last week's Trivia Contest again. John came close, getting 7 of 9 questions right, but, like most political contests, it is all or nothing and coming close doesn't even get you a free drink. This week's Grand Prize increases to $60.00. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute your winnings to a cause of your choice. Join us

In Politics, Nationally, Trump has been President for 100 days (as of Saturday) and during this time he has managed to exceed our worst expectations and fears. The good news is that he will only be President for another 1320 days. The bad news is that he will be President for 1320 more days and that, if we survive, it will take at least that long before our country recovers from him and his Republican enablers. It will be even longer before we regain the moral authority and leadership position we once enjoyed in the world. For now, we live in the kleptocratic world of a real estate developer whose moral imperative is to get everything you can, as quickly as you can, any way you can.

I say…. Resist.

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/974.htm

In South Dakota: This weekend the South Dakota Democratic Party (SDDP) holds its McGovern Day festivities. Keith Ellison, Congressman from Minnesota and National Democratic Party Vice-chair, is scheduled as the featured speaker at the Saturday evening dinner. But the McGovern Day weekend begins Friday night at 7 PM with a SDDP Executive Board meeting and continues the next morning with a SDDP Central Committee meeting at 9 AM. Additional events are scattered throughout Saturday.

As we noted last week, political intrigue may dominate the usually mundane SDDP's Executive Board and State Central Committee meetings. As you may recall, Rachelle Norberg, a USD law student from Burke, SD, proposed a number of amendments to the SDDP's Constitution, some of which would cut short the four year terms of the Party's current executive officers and trigger an immediate election of new officers. Ms. Norberg submitted her proposal on an apparently unsuspecting Executive Board following the abrupt resignation of the SDDP's Executive Director, Suzie Jones Pranger. Suzie is a recent USD law school graduate, originally from the Burke area. In her resignation letter, Suzie said she was leaving to work on a statewide campaign. Speculation has it she will work for State Senator and Democratic minority leader Billie Sutton who has expressed an interest in the 2018 race for Governor. Billie is also from Burke, SD. In case you haven't visited Burke or known any of the 604 people who live there, here is a link to its profile. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burke,_South_Dakota

Anticipating a snap election of new SDDP executive officers, the current Chair, Ann Tornberg, announced she would seek re-election if the proposed amendments passed. Paula Hawks, the 2016 Democratic nominee for the US House, also announced her candidacy for Chair. God only knows what is going on or what the results will be. But in case we can help bridge their differences, I invite both Ann and Paula to discuss things over a drink or two at Drinking Liberally this evening. Perhaps Rachelle can join us too. Alcohol often loosens the tongue and gets people to express their innermost feelings. Maybe Ann and Paula can work things out... for the good of the Party. Then again maybe not.

If not, I repeat what I said last week, "I am not a big fan of the current SDDP Chair, but a snap election initiated in this manner with almost no notice seems deeply arrogant on the part of the conspirators and very wrong-headed. There are right ways and wrong ways to do things and this is the wrong way."

Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.

Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

McGovern Day Prep at the "Taphouse 41", Tonight.

We meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41" which is located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: No one won last week's Trivia Contest. Virginia came close getting 7 of 9 questions right. This week's Grand Prize stands at $50.00. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute your winnings to a cause of your choice. Join us

In Politics, internationally: Trump misplaced the Carl Vincent aircraft carrier and its battle group this week. With bluster, he announced the carrier was cruising toward North Korea as a show of force only to discover, several days later, that it was in the Indian Ocean traveling in the opposite direction. Oops! …..And, last I checked, Trump hadn't bombed North Korea yet and North Korea hasn't yet used one of its 50 or so nuclear bombs on South Korea, or Japan, or China. It's crazy how even crazy people aren't crazy about dropping nuclear bombs.

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/973.htm

In South Dakota: Next weekend the South Dakota Democratic Party (SDDP) will hold its McGovern Day dinner, the SDDP's big annual gathering and fundraiser. Keith Ellison, Congressman from neighboring Minnesota and National Democratic Party Vice-chair, is scheduled to be the featured speaker. Keith was one of the few Democratic office holders who endorsed Bernie Sanders, the Socialist from Vermont, in the 2016 Democratic Presidential Primaries. He said Bernie reminded him of Jack Lemmon in that greatest of all Minnesota ice fishing movies, "Grumpy Old Men".

The SDDP will hold a state Central Committee meeting in conjunction with the dinner. Constitutional amendments, which could lead to an election of state party officers at this same meeting, have been introduced. To quote from a letter from Rachelle Norberg summarizing the proposed amendments, "One of the most important changes in the proposed amendment is the moving of State Officer elections to a spring window on odd-numbered years, typically held at the same time as the McGovern Day fundraiser. If passed, this change causes an election of new officers to be held April 29th, 2017. Please ensure all potential officer candidates are given adequate notice to the best of your ability"

There could be fireworks at the Central Committee meeting, folks!!! Rumor has it that Paula Hawks wants Ann Tornberg's job.

I am not a big fan of the current SDDP Chair, but a snap election, initiated in this manner, with almost no notice, seems deeply arrogant on the part of the conspirators and very wrong-headed. This appears to be a palace coup by Powers behind the throne. Changing one Queen for another is not progress even if the new Queen would be substantially taller. Change requires changing the Powers that be.

I need a drink. Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.
.
Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.

Taphouse 41 Tonight. Bombs and "Say it ain't so, Billie."

In preparation for Easter, we meet, as always, at the "TapHouse 41" located just west of Scheels on 41st St. Happy hour lasts 'til 6:00. It makes the evening very affordable.

In Trivia News: No one won our Trivia Contest last week. With the $10.00 we add to our Grand Prize, this week's Prize stands at $40.00. It could be yours. Or, as we recommend, you could contribute your winnings to a cause of your choice. Join us

In Politics, nationally: Trump has discovered his job approval ratings go up when he bombs people so, unfortunately, we can expect more bombs. We will probably see more bluster from Trump too, which, because a bully can't back down, will lead to even more bombs. A predictable, but very unfortunate scenario for all of us, especially those underneath them.

As someone said, "Trump is like G. W Bush, but he is a racist too."

Here is this week's summary of national progressive news, political cartoons, and opinion:
http://www.directzine4dems.com/972.htm

In South Dakota: Suzie Jones Pranger, the South Dakota Democratic Party's (SDDP's) Executive Director, resigned abruptly this week, just two weeks before McGovern Days, the SDDP's big annual gathering and fundraising event. You have to wonder what in the hell is going on at the SDDP. Speculation has it that Suzie plans to join the Gubernatorial Campaign of Billie Sutton from Burke (Suzie is also from Burke) but Billie hasn't decided to mount a campaign for Governor or any other Statewide political office yet, according to the Argus Leader. http://www.argusleader.com/story/news/politics/2017/04/12/sd-dems-direct...

I like Billie Sutton and I think he would make a fine candidate, but with the SDDP in such obvious disarray ( as underlined by Ms. Pranger's resignation ) I don't believe he or any other Democrat stands a chance in hell of winning a statewide race right now. Just look at the facts. Democratic voter registration in South Dakota continues to decline and now stands at 30.9%, its lowest level in generations. Meanwhile, Republican registration continues to increase. In the legislature, Democrats only hold 20 out of the 105 potential seats, almost all of which, including Billie Sutton's own seat, were uncontested by Republicans in the last election.

So I say, "Say it ain't so Billie". Save your powder and ignore the Sirens beaconing you onto the political shoals of the predictable 36 to 38% defeat suffered by almost every statewide Democrat candidate in the last ten years. Until the Democratic Party can articulate a message to differentiate itself positively in the minds of South Dakotans from the Republican Party and until it can rebuild itself, the results will be the same. Perhaps you are the man. Perhaps you can articulate the vision that the voters of this state seek. But if so, you can do that without the burden of a Gubernatorial Campaign and build an organization from the ground up as George McGovern did. You are a young man and will have many more opportunities to compete for higher office. Top-down attempts at reform feed the ego but they usually produce empty results in the end.

I need a drink. Join us at Drinking Liberally tonight.
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Don't let our name mislead you. We drink conservatively from 5:00 to 5:08, moderately 'til 5:15 and liberally to whenever. But, if you stay for karaoke, you may have stayed too long. And, as the Beer and Alcohol Companies encourage, we always drink responsibly.
Location: The "41 TapHouse", just west of Scheels on 41st St. in Sioux Falls.
When: 5:00 PM (almost) every Friday, Until: Whenever.
Hosts: Sheldon Osborn 376-6852, Mel Thaler, Wyatt Bordewyk, and other progressive people too numerous to mention.